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See more synonyms for unbound on Thesaurus.com
  1. simple past tense and past participle of unbind.
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  1. not bound, as a book.
  2. free; not attached, as by a chemical bond: unbound electrons.
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Origin of unbound

before 900; (adj.) Middle English unbounde, unbunden, Old English unbunden; see un-1, bound1
Can be confusedunbound unbounded


verb (used with object), un·bound, un·bind·ing.
  1. to release from bonds or restraint, as a prisoner; free.
  2. to unfasten or loose, as a bond or tie.
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Origin of unbind

before 950; Middle English unbinden, Old English unbindan; cognate with German entbinden. See un-2, bind
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for unbound

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He unbound his crimson silk cloth and whisked it about in the water to wash it.

  • She unbound and bound him in sections, as it were; he watching her with a morose smile.

  • Her glowing copper hair, all unbound, fell about her shoulders like a mantle.

    The Strolling Saint

    Raphael Sabatini

  • My unbound books, and all my tracts and pamphlets, are to be tied up with pink tape.


    Paul Allardyce

  • They unbound him and took him with them in their wanderings for three years.

British Dictionary definitions for unbound


  1. the past tense and past participle of unbind
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  1. (of a book) not bound within a cover
  2. not restrained or tied down by bonds
  3. (of a morpheme) able to form a word by itself; free
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verb -binds, -binding or -bound (tr)
  1. to set free from restraining bonds or chains; release
  2. to unfasten or make loose (a bond, tie, etc)
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for unbound



Old English unbindan, "to free from binding," from un- (2) + bind (v.). Cf. German entbinden, Dutch ontbinden. Literal and figurative senses both present in Old English.

Suæ huæt ðu unbindes ofer eorðu bið unbunden in heofnum. [Lindisfarne Gospels, Matt. xvi:19]

Unbound is from Old English unbunden, in literal sense. Figurative sense first attested late 14c.; of books from 1540s.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper